Myths and campfire stories – the development of culture on purpose

While you may or may not have an actual campfire at your workplace…..perhaps the watercooler, lunchroom, coffee machine or….ideally…the stand up meeting or daily huddle discussion is an important cultural ritual.

Why?

Because if you want effective cooperation…the very thing that makes organizations successful…you need to have a culture that supports your vision and goals.

Culture is formed, shaped and developed by stories and myths.

These stories influence and mould people to think in certain ways…and from thinking comes behaviours, adherence and acceptance of standards, drives and desires or as Yuval Noah Harari calls them “Artificial Instincts”

It is this network of artificial instincts that makes up culture.

All cultures experience growth through a constant flux of competing and often contradictory values and priorities in response to changes in the external environment.

So what is the message here?

Well, a decent takeaway for the day might be this……

You either put in the work to create and share the true stories of what your culture should look like and share them at your campfire….daily…

or

your culture will emerge out of chaos…and if history has taught us anything, a culture emerging without conscious and deliberate leadership…without consideration of values and where we are heading…it is usually a savage mess.

Decide what environment and culture you want to create.
Create a consistent campfire to share and discuss stories that highlight the good and improve on the undesirable.

Do it on purpose…

Make it a consistent practice…and involve everyone you can.

Your people…and ultimately society will thank you.

B

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